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To start things of, this is the first tactic I personally built in FM from scratch, I usually just play with certain generic tactics such as simple 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3, nevertheless, as I got experience in the game, I wanted to build a tactic with the objective of playing football as I like to see it being played.
Currently, I'm managing AZ Alkmaar from Netherlands and we are trying to transiction from the 4-3-3 to the 4-1-2-1-2
So, the idea behind this tactic is to play possession football with a lot of movement from the midfielders and from the striker, which will perform the role of a false 9.
Starting of, we have a sweeper keeper at goal because we want to play possession football (i have mine on attack because Bijlow is capable of doing that but of couse, this can be tweaked even to a Goalkeeper, if you want to), we will have two ball playing defenders, one wing back on support and the other one on attack. We have one deep lying playmaker (which will be the first playmaker of the team), one box to box midfielder (secures defending responsabilities, since we don't have someone with that much defense responsabilities in the midfield and we play with a certain risk), one central midfielder (will be making runs into the channel), one shadow striker (essential to the tactic), a false 9 (will be the playmaker after the ball gets past midfield) and one advanced forward.
The idea behind this is playing possession football, starting from the back with the sweeper keeper and the ball playing defenders, this last being essential to the formation- this, because the movement we have is very vertical; this is, we have a shadow striker, a central midfielder on attack, we playing narrow.. all of the movement the players are making is vertical (towards the goal, that is), we don't have things as a carrilero to secure some width and we don't have wingers, so we need central defenders capable of carrying the ball and making good passes if they need to, otherwise the players will be marked and they won't know what to do.
The deep lying playmaker will be helping the defenders on the first phase of the build up + with the sweeper keeper we won't have problems breaking the opposition press.
Now, with the central midfielders, one will be a box to box, someone with more defensive duties and who can cover the whole field as the other one, the central midfielder on attack, will be trying to make runs behind the opposition back line. Due to their roles, the left back will be a wing back on attack so we can have also some width and the right back is a casual wing back on support (so we don't get too many bodies forward when the central midfielder makes his run).
As the ball gets past midfield, the false 9 will get into play and his job is to get back in the field and pick up the ball, by doing so, he will probably (or hopefully) drag one defender and mess up the whole back line, creating spaces- and this is where the shadow striker (mainly) comes into play, as he will be the man responsible for attacking those very much spaces and receiving the ball. As you can tell, the central midfielder on attack is also capable of making runs into those spaces and let's not forget about the advanced forward, who will be pushing the oposition back line and targeting their backs aswell. Also, the box to box midfielder also runs into those chanells, not being very common tho.
As instructions that you may have questions, we will be working our way into the box, since we want to play possession, so we attack the goal at the very same time that we keep composed and don't rush things and I have low crosses on just because I don't have very tall strikers- of couse, this can be tweaked.
As we have two strikers, we will be playing with a much higher line of engagement, that can be tweaked aswell if you think about it- if you are really that better than the other team, you don't need to press them at the point of them kicking the ball forward, let them play short then kill them with the press, but that's on you.
I think that's if for the explanation! Down below are some results as I'm in the middle of the season (will post past and current season) and the detailed instructions of the team.
I don't know if I will change anything in the tactic so do bear in mind that this can be changed- will inform in this thread tho
Last change- 25/07/2022